Blair Witch

Halloween has officially begun so let the horror flicks flow forth. This year has led me to believe the crop of horror films this year would be a cut above the rest. With stand outs like Lights Out and The Conjuring 2. One would think a new Blair Witch would be a no brainer, right? Wrong.

To preface this, I have to say that I have never seen the first movie. In fact, I kind of curse the day it was released as it basically gave birth to the Found Footage genre, which is basically such a lazy way to make a movie, they have run out of ways to make it fresh without making it look too polished, which takes all the fear out of it. The basic plot of this one is the same as the first. A group of young people go camping where they shouldn’t and we see them run around, screaming at ever shadow. This time around, James, the brother of Heather from the first film apparently, is going to the Black Hills Forest because he received a video that leads him to believe his sister is alive.Over ten years after her disappearance. Uh,yeah, right, but we need something to get these idiots on the road.

James and company travel to Burkittsville, the sight of the proposed Blair Witch incident. They talk to a couple locals and soon they join the group in their camping trip. We get a lot of pointless banter between the friends as they delve deeper into the woods. The ominous feeling that you know something is going to happen is the only thing that fuels this part of the story. When things finally do begin to happen, it’s impossible to care because you can’t tell what’s going on due to the jerky cameras. You just hear screaming, a crash and the screen flutters around until finally it holds, supposedly revealing something that should make us scream, but never does.

This is basically the first movie done over with a bigger budget. I don’t want to say much due to the fact that there are some moments that do work. I didn’t hate the movie. It was actually entertaining, but I was just very disappointed because I was expecting something really special. One critic proclaimed it ‘the scariest movie of the year’. Not even close. There were a few shocks, small shocks, but for the most part it only worked on the level of voyeurism. The concept that you’re watching this footage which spares you having to live through this experience yourself. What also deflated the experience was it wasn’t treated as most found footage films are. Usually there’s no studio credits. It  usually just starts with the warning that what we are about to see  is found footage by the police and it starts. It makes us really believe it’s real. The studio logo really kills the illusion. The film just seemed like another lazy attempt by Hollywood to cash in on something that’s already been made for some easy money. I think, in general, Hollywood would be better off investing in fresh, original stories instead of this endless regurgitation of past successes; hoping lightning will strike again. It rarely ever does.

Audience: I thought it was going to be a good crowd, but at the eleventh hour, just as the film was to begin, a bunch of loud, obnoxious punks came in, laughing and loud, acting like they were the only ones in the auditorium. Needless to say they never stopped talking for the whole movie. They were jumping around and giggling like they were in their own living room. I can see why they were out. Their parents were smart and probably locked  them out of their houses; although I think as the people responsible for not only their existence but also the low quality of their characters, I think the parents should be forced to confined quarters with their spawn. I mean, why should we be punished?

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